cropped-butterfly-2.pngI’m sorry you found my blog.

HA!  What a funny thing to say on a blog!!  But seriously, if you landed here, you either know me, or know someone that has cancer.  That’s why I’m sorry!

Cancer.

I hate that word.

I remember sitting in the oncologist’s office in my early 20’s listening to the Dr. tell me that while it was not likely I would get Ocular Melanoma like my Mom, 3 out of 4 people would be diagnosed with some sort of cancer in their life.  Since all of my Grandparents and my Mom have died of some type of cancer, I knew my day would come.  I just never thought my diagnosis would be the day after my 41st birthday and as a mother of a 10, 7 and 6 year old.

Fast forward 4 years (October 2019) and the cancer has returned in other bones.  So here we are, ready to fight again…and looking to be on some sort of treatment for the rest of my life.

This blog is my journey as I fight to leave cancer behind and move on in my life.

I should probably back up and introduce myself . . . my name is Jennifer.  I’m a Christ follower, married to an amazing man (who happens to be a chef turned Co-CEO of a restaurant), have 3 beautiful daughters and I’ve been diagnosed with Stage IV Breast Cancer which originally spread to my sternum, but has now spread to quite a few other bones  and one of my lungs as well.

I know it can be confusing when you stumble upon a new blog, so let me help you get started.

  • I have a blog to keep track of my thoughts and to let friends and family know what’s going on.
  • You can get to know our family or read my personal testimony here.
  • As I’ve been going through different procedures, I’ve written down what it was like.  You can find a list of those over in the side bar (or down at the bottom if you are on a mobile device).
  • Click here to receive an email when I publish new posts.
  • And finally, if you noticed above that I’m married to a chef and think that must be the MOST AMAZING THING EVER, click here and browse through my blog about what it’s really like to be married to a chef.  (I love blogging.  Can you tell?)

Jennifer

Here’s what’s going on with me right now . . .

The dreaded day 3 should not apply to vacations!

Day 3….what is it about day 3 that makes it harder? Day 3 of the school week, day 3 of the work week, day 3 after chemo, day 3 of VBS, day 3 of Camp……the list could go on and on.. Vacation must be part of the hard day 3 thing as well, and no one ever told me. Day 3 in a Disney Park….not the best day we’ve ever had.

Today ended well. Valley Girls and Guys hired a photographer for us. So we took some Disney family photos around 6. (More on that later.)

Then we entered Epcot for a late dinner from The Boardwalk side, which is such an amazing resort! We had time to look around a few countries and then had dinner at The Coral Reef restaurant. Everything we ordered was wonderful.

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We Made It!

We made it! Day 1 in the parks! Epcot was first on Saturday.
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Ready….Set….

Go! Well almost.

The girls now each have a few pairs of shorts that fit them so that’s encouraging. Hopefully it’s enough. I have packing lists ready for them to pack for themselves and they are doing laundry this afternoon.

It’s a lot to think about packing for 10 days. It’s pretty overwhelming and I haven’t been feeling good the past couple days. I’m very anxious about the trip, because I never know how I am going to feel.

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My Unexpected “Visit” to the ER Today

Today turned out nothing like we thought it would.

Originally, Tom was going to go up to Seattle for a couple meetings this morning. Those were rescheduled last night after I was in bed, so I didn’t know that until this morning. It was a nice surprise to find out he would be home all day.

The next unexpected thing was my “visit” to the ER. I put “visit” is quotation marks because I actually was never admitted to the ER.

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Back Pain

My lower back and tail bone are really hurting and have been for the past few days. I had to go up on my pain meds which I hate to do, but have to right now.

Please pray that the pain will calm down as the extra pain medicine makes me very drowsy.

Tomorrow, a wheelchair we ordered will be delivered. It reclines and so we are hoping that I might be able to sleep in it as well. I will keep you posted on that.

More test results and our trip

My bone scan results showed what we knew…more growth. Some new growth in my tailbone are, which explains the new pain I have been having.

In other news…we are not going to Hawaii for a few reasons, but the main one being that every activity is based around water and I have a tube coming out of my body and can’t get in water.

So we are going to Disney World, which was our first choice anyways! We booked a 10 day trip and are staying at the Coronado Springs Resort. We booked a casita that has a separate living room so we’ll have plenty of room to rent the recliner or bed I need.

We will go with no expectations except to have fun as a family. I will do what I can and rest as I need to. We will rent a wheel chair and they can take turns pushing me around. Tom and I will be flying in first class and the girls in coach.

So that’s what’s going on. We leave in 2 weeks. The girls need a lot clothes and are excited to shop together. Thanks to those of you who have offered to take them shopping, but they are fine going on their own (and have asked to).

This is a big trip and I’m so excited. Well be moving slowly, but it will still be fun. Please pray we all stay healthy. We are going to keep to ourselves as much as possible for the next couple weeks to help with that!

Will you especially be praying for my emotions on this trip? I never know what little thing is going to hit me. Tonight we were going through all the shoes we had and it looks like all 3 of our girls all wear a size 9 shoe. We’ve always been curious which one will end up being taller. Then I realized I probably will not be alive to see who is the tallest as Ashley is still only 11. I started crying. Why couldn’t I get cancer when the girls were older? I am going to miss out on so much!

CT Results

The CT results from the radiologist were in My Chart about an hour after I got home on Wednesday. I didn’t need to Google anything to get the jist of it. The cancer has spread.

We talked to my oncologist on Friday afternoon to make sure we understood it correctly and to talk about treatment options.

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Meet Jennifer

Breast Cancer Patient, Chef Wife and Mom

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Resources:

verses of encouragement
How to help a friend or family member with cancer
Resources for Cancer 'Patients
cancer insurance

What to Expect:

Breast Biopsy
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PET Scan
port surgery
chemotherapy
Mastectomy
Reconstruction
oophorectomy
Radiation
neuropathy after chemo